Twitter says it hired "too many white and Asian men" to fill workforce

According to recent statistics released by social media site Twitter, the company's workforce of nearly 3,000 people is significantly lacking in diversity: 90 percent of its employees are white or Asian, the data shows, and over 70 percent are men. Company executives say they're concerned about this issue, and are working to correct it and hire employees from a more diverse background.

Twitter released their "diversity data" in response to a campaign by Reverend Jesse Jackson, which works to "protect, defend, and gain civil rights by leveling the economic and educational playing fields, and to promote peace and justice around the world." Other tech companies -- most significantly Google and Facebook -- released their data as well, and the results on employee diversity closely match Twitter's data.

According to Twitter's "vice president of diversity and inclusion," which is an actual position, the company wants to change their hiring habits and diversify their workforce. "We are keenly aware that Twitter is part of an industry that is marked by dramatic imbalances in diversity," said VP Janet Van Huysse on Twitter's official blog. "A Twitter that we can be proud of is diverse, and it’s inclusive. After leading HR at Twitter for four years, I am now honored to focus specifically on these efforts. And we have a number of employee-led groups putting a ton of effort into the cause."

There is no word on a specific timeframe for Twitter's increased diversity efforts to show any significant results, but pressure from rights organizations could help force the process along.

Source: Twitter via AP | Image via Rocketpost.com

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As long as Twitter or any other company are not purposefully discriminating against certain groups for employment, then they shouldn't feel too bad about those numbers.

The way the article reads, its almost as if they are saying they have been doing just that, even though I'm sure that is not what they are saying.

Diversity should be a natural thing. As more and more people join a particular field, you should see the numbers tick up. If they don't, then you need to examine things like interest in the field, education regarding those fields, etc. If someone really wants the numbers to go up, then work has to be done to get more people from certain groups to pursue a career in that field.

Any company that is discriminating, I mean really discriminating against a group, won't get away with it for long.

BLS Approximations for IT:
Men: 64%
Women: 36%

White: 69%
Asian: 8%
Black: 13%
Hispanic: 10%

These are just rough approximations, but does 70% male (~64% of pool) and 90% white or asian (~77% of pool) really seem like racism or sexism in this industry? Would we be complaining about this if it were 50/50 men to women or praising them for what should be seen in this regard as even more of a discriminatory delta?

Hire for skills, not skin. Hire for generating positive outcomes, not genitalia.

Asian seems a little low and black and hispanic seem a little high from my experiences of what I've seen in IT. Asian is definitely low if you throw in Indian into that group.

So does this mean that qualified people will be laid off or let go to make room for more diversity? If the best person was hired for each of those positions, then who cares what the breakdown ends up being?

Probably 30% will get fired because of these days feminism. They cant do **** but they can complain. Oh and this was said by my wife.

We have a female doing tech support in our team (UK). She should be on 1st line logging calls. Sadly this rings true for most women in the profession. I'm actually yet to work with one that isn't. That said there are plenty of knowledgeable women out there. Just look at any of them doing keynotes in Microsoft or Google. I've also been taught by two great female tutors. Both were American.

So now the question is...are you going to lose your job now because your white or asian where it can go to someone more "diverse"?

Diversity. Sorry, dont like it and dont believe in it. If you are good at your job, you should get the job. What race or gender should not make a difference. If company only hires all women, fine as long as they fit the job. If they are all black people, white, asian...again, who cares as long as they qualify for the job.

Just shows you Twitter is ran by Twits (or, is that tweets)

After all this time, they just now figured out they aren't hiring enough other ethnic groups? Wonder what (forced) brought on this decision?

Here's another thing I will NEVER use, along with Facebook or Chrome!! :x

I would suggest there are a lot of white and asian men who are in the right culture/country to have a job like working for Twitter.
It's unfortunate that the majority of black people live in parts of the world where working for Twitter just isn't suitable.
That doesn't mean Twitter aren't a diverse company.... what a moronic thing to say.

I almost feel discriminated against these days because I am male and white. Perhaps one day (especially in the UK!), I will be the minority, if I'm not in a minority already!

And what percentage of the suitable proffesionally trained population is white or asian? If this is a shockingly different percentage then I understand the need for positive discrimination. Otherwise please dont go there.

'70 percent are men' - not surprised. I don't know of many women who are into programming.

I think what the article is saying is that Twitter has become bloated; no matter what race, there's too many people (they could probably get by with just a quarter of their workforce).

Bingo. My office employs around 20 programmers - all of them male. Know why? Because women never apply for positions.

At least 75% of the Computer Science graduates at the college I went to were male as well. Men are just more drawn to the profession than women. Likewise around 80% of the Nursing students were female.

What they want to do is basically none of your business. They own the business and they want a diverse environment. Why do you care?

Oh, when I saw Jesse Jackson's name in the article I knew it was going to be something stupid. Can't have too many of those evil white and Asian males.

I wonder if the same news article would be published if they had too many women ?

"Oh no we must seek to hire more men as we over subscribed for women"

I wont hold my breath.

I really couldn't care less about the race, I don't know why that was mentioned. If they find the person who can fulfill the opportunity, then it's fine. But if you're actually selecting race upon opportunity during hire, then something is obviously wrong.

It's interesting that you didn't even notice that the problem is discrimination based on race AND gender.

Oh, and it's pretty clear that they are discriminating if their workforce is overwhelmingly biased in favour of specific groups. That may not be overt or intentional but it's still discrimination.

It's probably not even discrimination. There's just not that many women or minorities interested in programing/IT. White males, Asians, and Indians (assuming they didn't include that in their Asian numbers) are pretty much what you'll get if you're looking to hire people in that sector.

I've tried to get plenty of girls (and some boys) into tech. They just won't budge. So..like I said, it's not all about race. It's literally people not being open minded.

I'm on the fence in these kinds of situations. You want an equal workforce, which is cool. But in order to obtain said equal workforce, you have to basically use a form of racism in order to achieve it. Example: hiring people based on their race and not just their job qualifications.

As long as someone is actually more qualified, hire them. Bu if you have two or more equally qualified people, you need to look at what other things they can bring to the workplace. And just having another skin tone doesn't bring a whole lot, though it also can bring something, but you gave to see what personalities fit in and how they can positively add to the dynamic. Heck even if someone is more qualified you don't want to hire him/her if he/she is toxic to the work environment.

Tha Bloo Monkee said,
You want an equal workforce, which is cool.

That shouldn't really the objective of any large organization. They should hire the best people whether they are male or female, white, asian or black.

I don't see the problem? If these people were the best people for the role they applied for at interview then that's just how it goes.

who cares about that, if they are good at the jobs then what's the issue.

or do they need to hire black, Chinese & gay people just to look like they have diversity.

I think if your good at what you do than that's fine, don't do what the UK MET police did, hiring people who wasn't good at the job just to fill the race gap

People tend to hire whom they feel most comfortable with. I agree that skills are the most important thing, but I can't tell you how many times I've been in an interview committee and someone who was a minority and completely qualified for the position was passed over simply because they felt that another candidate was "better suited for the position". My exgf was in HR and would tell me horror stories of how a minority candidate was even better qualified for the position and a decision was made based on how well they would fit in with the "culture". Its why we have a saying that you have to be 50% better just to be equal. By having a more diverse workforce, sometimes its easier to make better decisions about candidates than one that is monocultural.

tomcoleman said,
I think if your good at what you do than that's fine, don't do what the UK MET police did, hiring people who wasn't good at the job just to fill the race gap

It's interesting that you should mention the MET because they've just admitted that they employ too many white men from outside London who aren't able to do the job properly. They've announced a new policy to hire from within London to ensure that police understand and represent the multi-ethnic communities they serve.

I'm sure it's difficult for all the white men here at Neowin to understand but you're not automatically the best person for the job.

I presume you are non white , my comment relates to anyone can have the job just the right person - but company's shouldn't hire on colour ratio's

tomcoleman said,
I presume you are non white , my comment relates to anyone can have the job just the right person - but company's shouldn't hire on colour ratio's

My comment really goes to any circumstance where there is a low representation of a minority. In sports here in the States, look at our basketball, football, and a host of other activities. Any minority including whites may experience prejudice based on the culture of the environment. It all depends on the situation. I agree it should be based on ability rather than comfort, but that's part of the problem.

tomcoleman said,

or do they need to hire black, Chinese & gay people just to look like they have diversity.

Uh, Chinese people ARE Asian.

TMYW said,

Uh, Chinese people ARE Asian.

So? Maybe Twitter's workforce included a high percentage of Indians, Israelis or Russians instead of Chinese. That still doesn't mean anything.

While I don't agree with the selection of groups the OP included to represent diversity, I do agree with their opinion that looking at the diversity by skin color and country of origin of just employees is stupid. Instead, they should be looking at diversity of their employees versus diversity of job candidates.

Pluto is a Planet said,
So? Maybe Twitter's workforce included a high percentage of Indians, Israelis or Russians instead of Chinese. That still doesn't mean anything.

That's just idiotic. The term "Asian" used in this context doesn't mean continent of origin. It's obviously about one's phenotype.

All of this works like an obscure Schrödinger's Cat box of race.

Look at the people in the box as just people = not racist
Look at all the people in the box as races = racist
Don't look in the box and just know it has 3000 people in it = not racist & racist (at the same time)

In the end of the day you can't win. If you start hiring one race, and then excluding other races to balance diversity, then it becomes hiring based on race and becomes racist.

Tokens! TOKENS EVERYWHERE!

Edited by Ad Man Gamer, Jul 24 2014, 7:45pm :

TMYW said,

That's just idiotic. The term "Asian" used in this context doesn't mean continent of origin. It's obviously about one's phenotype.

Look at the original article; they say ethnicity. That doesn't mean what they look like, but the group of people they identify themselves with. People who consider themselves Asian are... From Asia lol. Is "Hispanic or Latino" supposed to be a phenotype too? Because that one sounds very origin-based to me. And where do Arabics fit in if not Asian? And why is there a category of "Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander" when that specific includes Japanese, who by their phenotype is Asian?

Pluto is a Planet said,
Look at the original article; they say ethnicity. That doesn't mean what they look like, but the group of people they identify themselves with. People who consider themselves Asian are... From Asia lol. Is "Hispanic or Latino" supposed to be a phenotype too? Because that one sounds very origin-based to me. And where do Arabics fit in if not Asian? And why is there a category of "Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander" when that specific includes Japanese, who by their phenotype is Asian?

The reason to look at these statistics in the first place is to study racism--not prejudice against specific nationalities or even ethnicities. In the US, a Mexican of Spanish heritage (i.e. not a Mestizo) is most likely going to be treated like a white person and not "one of dem damn Messicans!".

Anyway, you're splitting hairs. The reference to "Asians" in this article is clearly about "East Asians" or as white people used to call "Orientals".

TMYW said,

The reason to look at these statistics in the first place is to study racism--not prejudice against specific nationalities or even ethnicities. In the US, a Mexican of Spanish heritage (i.e. not a Mestizo) is most likely going to be treated like a white person and not "one of dem damn Messicans!".

Anyway, you're splitting hairs. The reference to "Asians" in this article is clearly about "East Asians" or as white people used to call "Orientals".

If that was the case, why aren't there categories for Pakistani/Indians and Middle Easterns? They look distinctly different from every category listed and there is a significant number of them in the US. Definitely more so than Native Americans. By your definition of what these categories are, they should put themselves as "Other". Do you honestly think that's what they're doing lol or putting down Asian?

Besides, I see nowhere that the reference to Asians as being Eastern Asian made clear (which you said was obvious lol). If that were so, then why would they name "Asian" so broadly but be overly specific about including "Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander" when "Pacific Islander" suffices and "American Indian or Alaska Native" when "American Indian" clearly covers Alaska Native?

I've seen it in pretty shocking circumstances as well. I've seen a hiring manager in charge of reviewing résumés throwing out all the ones with "funny sounding names"without even looking at their qualifications :/

Pluto is a Planet said,
If that was the case, why aren't there categories for Pakistani/Indians and Middle Easterns? They look distinctly different from every category listed and there is a significant number of them in the US. Definitely more so than Native Americans. By your definition of what these categories are, they should put themselves as "Other". Do you honestly think that's what they're doing lol or putting down Asian?

Besides, I see nowhere that the reference to Asians as being Eastern Asian made clear (which you said was obvious lol). If that were so, then why would they name "Asian" so broadly but be overly specific about including "Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander" when "Pacific Islander" suffices and "American Indian or Alaska Native" when "American Indian" clearly covers Alaska Native?

It's obvious because that's the vernacular. East Asians make up the majority of all Asiatic ethnic groups in the US. Indians and Pakistani are generally referred to as "South Asians".

https://www.google.com/diversi...l#tab=asian-googler-network

Do you see the "Indus Googler Network"? Why would they have that group if they're simply "Asian" and could just join the "Asian Googler Network"?

Here's the Facebook of Asian American Association student group at UC Berkeley.

https://www.facebook.com/UCBAAA

How many Indians do you see in those pictures?

For this diversity study Indians were probably grouped as "Asians", although in the past Indians were categorized as "Caucasian", but the OP's statement about hiring Chinese employees was still asinine.